Have I not commanded you? Be strong and courageous. Do not be frightened, and do not be dismayed, for the Lord your God is with you wherever you go. (Joshua 1:9)
It can be a daunting task to take over a Military leadership position from someone who was legendary. This was certainly true for Joshua when he accepted the mantle of leadership of Israel after the death of Moses. He had climbed up the ranks from being a servant to being general of the army. Now he must assume the role of commander-in-chief. This was an intimidating promotion, even for a great warrior like Joshua.
In our verse for today God understands what Joshua is feeling and therefore gives him an order. He tells Joshua that to successfully command he must not let his fears dictate his actions. He is to be strong and courageous. Even today personal courage is so important that it is included in the Army values. Personal courage means that we face fear, danger or adversity rather than retreat.
God goes on to tell us why we have no need to be afraid or to lose heart or hope. The reason we can have personal courage is because God promises that he will be with us wherever we find ourselves. We never have to face things on our own. We can rely on God’s strength instead of just our own. This is a powerful promise.
Is there something in your life that must be done but you are too intimidated to face it? Fear does not have to hold you back. God reminds you of his promise. Whatever you have to do, wherever you have to go, however daunting the mission, remember that he is with you every step of the way. You are not alone. So have courage and carry on!
God of power, I have things to do that frighten me. Give me your courage, that I may move forward and complete what you have called me to do. Amen.